After watching Shohei Ohtani’s major league debut on the mound, here’s a little piece of advice: Let this play out. Don’t rush to any judgments. authentic nfl jerseys Appreciate the athlete, applaud his pursuit of something that hasn’t been done in 100 years and sit back and enjoy performances like the one he gave Sunday.
The hype around Ohtani was tempered a bit after an unimpressive spring training, but with the bright lights of the regular season turned on, Ohtani showed the stuff and the makeup that makes his potential as a pitcher so exciting. He reached 100 mph on the radar gun a couple of times, averaged 97.8 mph with his fastball and hit 98 in his final inning of work in the sixth and retired 14 of his final 15 batters. This was the pitcher every team dreamed of signing.
The Los Angeles Angels held off the Oakland Athletics 7-4, with Ohtani earning the win. It wasn’t a perfect outing. In the second inning, he hung a slider that Matt Chapman crushed for a three-run home run. His fastball command was shaky at times, and his slider was inconsistent, although it became sharper as the game went on. Most impressive was how he settled down after Chapman’s home run, not rattled by one mistake. After a long rest in the top of the sixth, he finished off his outing in quick order, retiring the A’s on eight pitches.
The raw stuff was obviously impressive. He induced 18 swing-and-misses — Angels starters beat that just three times in 2017, and only one pitcher (Alex Colome) generated more misses in his first career start over the past 10 seasons. The splitter will definitely be his big strikeout weapon, as five of his six strikeouts came on that pitch. He had a tendency to yank his fastball to right-handed batters when trying to hit the outside corner, wholesale nfl jerseys and the slider at times looked more like a lazy curveball. Based on the Statcast pitch readings, he has a couple of different splitters — one that dives down and one that moves more horizontally. He kept bouncing fastballs in the dirt in Arizona, but he had only a couple of those Sunday, a sign of a more consistent release point.